First of all, it’s really important to know that essential oils are hydrophobic, meaning they don’t mix with water. Because essential oils are extremely concentrated, they should never be used undiluted on the skin, even if you just want to add a few drops of essential oil to the bath, they need to be diluted first (check out How to Use Essential Oils in the Bath for full details).
The same principle goes for making bath salts, the essential oils must be diluted first. Adding them to salt is not enough because when you add the mix to the bath water, the salt ‘melts’, leaving undiluted essential oils floating on top of the bath water and in direct contact with your skin. So, first add the essential oils to a fatty base oil such as olive or almond oil, this can then be mixed in with the bath salts – when added to the bath the salt will melt and you will be left with essential oils dispersed in the base oil, which will give the added benefit of nourishing your skin*.
Bath Salt Recipe (the basic components that you can tweak to your taste):
- Salt – 200 grams,
- Base/Carrier Oil – 10 grams (or ml if simpler to measure) of any nut/seed/fruit oil e.g. almond/sunflower/olive oil,
- Essential Oil – 5 drops (choose 1 or several essential oils to use but ensure the ‘total’ number of drops is 5).
- pour the base oil into a jug, then add the drops of essential oil and stir,
- pour the salt into a large bowl, add the blend of base and essential oil and mix thoroughly,
- add a hand full of the salt mix to the bath, do so once the water is run and you are ready to step in (if you add it while the water is still running, the essential oils in the mix will evaporate with the steam).
Muscle Relaxing Bath Salt Recipe:
- Epsom Salt** – 200 grams,
- Oil – 10 grams – arnica (macerated in olive oil),
- Essential Oil – 5 drops – lavender, black pepper &/or chamomile.
Skin Soothing Bath Salt Recipe:
- Dead Sea Salt** – 200 grams,
- Base Oil – 10 grams – calendula (macerated in olive oil), apricot &/or. camellia,
- Essential Oil – 5 drops – chamomile, lavender &/or neroli (orange blossom).
Refreshing Bath Salt Recipe:
- Salt (your choice, see below**) – 200 grams,
- Oil – 10 grams – your choice eg. olive, almond, apricot oil,
- Essential Oil – 5 drops – rosemary, mandarin &/or coriander seed.
Tip: If you want to add flowers & petals to your bath salts, (e.g. rose, lavender, chamomile) sprinkle a few spoonfuls into the mix, enough for your desired visual effect. Note, that it can make the bath more difficult to clean afterwards, so wrapping all the salts/flowers/oils into a muslin cloth and tying them up with string will mean you don’t need to collect all the petals after your bath.
* Caution, due to the base oil the bath can be slippery so be careful not to slip!